Speech by Joël Nana Kontchou on the occasion of the 133rd edition of the International Labor Day
Read the message of our GM to the staff during the 133nd International Labour Day , Mai 2019.
This 1st May celebration provides us another opportunity to talk to each other, to take stock on what is going on well, on what is not going on quite well, to shed light on the expectations placed on each and every one of you and to examine carefully the expectations that you have vis-à-vis the company.
Eneo Cameroon is our common weal and as such it deserves all our attention, our commitment, our determination and above all an unwavering cohesion without which our common project cannot be fully accomplished.
Dear team-mates, allow me, on this feast day to extend my heartfelt congratulations to those of us who took part in the traditional parade organized throughout our ten administrative regions. Kudos to your commitment to always making our company shine.
I listened keenly to the message delivered by the staff representative. I appreciate the recognition of our joint efforts that has made it possible to maintain a good social climate and to provide to our colleagues markedly improved working conditions.
Together, let’s appreciate at its true value the path covered in the last five years. I have taken good note of the points that are important to you as presented by your representatives.
If it is true that all problems cannot be resolved at the same time, it is equally true that the pending issues are mostly projects in progress, be they the collective bargaining agreement or the training of staff representatives that was launched the day before yesterday at Koumassi, and which is going to continue throughout the month of May.
We are going to continue working with you in order to carry out to the end each of these initiatives, and to satisfy the expectations of personnel.
As you pointed out, the extension of the period of our concession provides a huge opportunity to transform our company and to develop our sector. In the same vein, it imposes on us new challenges and obligations to be met.
It is within this framework that the last Board of Directors authorized the putting in place of a new organization for our company aimed at meeting the current challenges which are:
- Safety of property and persons;
- Ethics and Governance ;
- Operational efficiency;
- Modernization of our activities related to distribution and sale of energy;
- Access to electricity and customer satisfaction.
The project is admittedly huge and ambitious but the foundations put in place in the previous years reassure us of our collective ability (Cohesion, cohesion and cohesion…) to meet all the challenges that I have just mentioned.
When we look at the performances recorded in the first four months of the year 2019, the results are generally on the budget path mapped out at the beginning of the year, except in the safety domain.
Dear team-mates, let me stress on safety which is not only our number one goal, but is also an obligation we must fulfil to work (License to operate).
Unfortunately, since the beginning of this year, we have recorded fatalities that could and should have been avoided. The conduct of our activity will only make sense if we accept to integrate safety in the daily actions that we pose.
It is in this light that we have embarked on an overhaul of our safety approach, based on cultural change that will lead everyone to ensure their own safety, the safety of their team and the safety of others.
I invite each and every one of you to take ownership of this cultural change and to make sure that you are at all times the guarantor of the safety of other team-mates.
“We have to be our brother’s keeper”.
Dear team-mates, all the efforts made at the level of operations are being destroyed by the fatalities we are recording on our network. Together, we must put a STOP to this tragedy and stop thinking this happens according to fate.
Our Health and Safety policy is going to be adapted. It will hinge on 4 pillars: responsibility, commitment, continuous improvement and sharing of experience. Priority must be clearly given to work in complete safety and in this regard an organization and a plan of action that make a complete break with the past have been adopted. We are expecting the commitment of all, beginning with the leaders, in order to ensure a rapid implementation of the programme.
With regard to operations, and primarily the distribution efficiency, we recorded more than encouraging results in the first quarter of 2019. 1.4 points of average monthly gain recorded, thus putting our performance in line with the objectives that we set for ourselves.
We accepted 4-point increase in distribution efficiency for 2019. We are demonstrating that this goal is not surreal and that we can achieve it despite the difficulties encountered in mobilizing certain resources.
Let us therefore remain mobilized in the execution of the action plans under implementation.
Concerning finance, our cash position has gradually deteriorated over the last few months, mainly due to Government debts, coupled with those of some public entities. When these debts are separated from our portfolio, the collection rate is within the margins provided for in our plan.
With regard to modernization, the program to introduce prepaid or postpaid smart meters is ongoing. Despite the logistical difficulties observed at the beginning of the year, the pace of execution has accelerated sharply in recent weeks.
This will thus give a lot of hope towards the achievement of the annual goal of installing 20 000 prepaid meters and 40 000 postpaid smart meters.
In terms of technical service quality, we have seen a decline in the quality of energy served to users in recent months. Of course, work on our network has been intensified, but we are witnessing a new phenomenon: the decline in our SAIFI which refers to the frequency of interruptions witnessed by the customer.
Dear Colleagues, I expect you to take any interruption seriously, irrespective of its duration.
- Scheduled works should be optimized to minimize interruptions;
- Interference of vegetation on our line corridors must be systematically eliminated;
- The network will be studied and reconfigured to eliminate cases of overload;
- Feeders and back-to-back substations must be standardized as soon as possible….
- Power outages must be managed as quickly and safely as possible.
We must launch a campaign against these power cuts that are undermining the comfort of our users and negatively impacting the image of our company.
At the human resource level, we are, just as well, about meeting the challenge related to the rejuvenation of our workforce as well as that related to the promotion of diversity.
Concerning rejuvenation, we are pursuing what we embarked on these past years. Broad and diversified recruitments allowed for the reinforcement of our operational teams while reducing the average age from 45 to 42 over the last five years.
With regard to diversity, while pursuing our effort, we can note with satisfaction the significant evolution in the representativeness rate of women in the management of the company, which has moved up from 4 to 15% in 4 years.
Following the review of our performances and our new organization, I have another important announcement to make. The Board of Directors has authorized us to propose to the Shareholders’ Meeting a draft redistribution of dividends as from this year. It is the first of its kind.
I cannot end my speech without making an appeal, like the staff representatives, for more commitment and integrity, but above all for more cohesion.
Without cohesion, everything we are building becomes fragile, ephemeral.
We have adopted cohesion as one of our values. In a recent survey conducted by an independent institute and in which employees were asked to give their opinion, it was revealed that cohesion was ranked last among all our values.
This result is a reflection, amongst our colleagues, of a constant feeling of sabotage, of individualism whereas we extol the virtue of team spirit.
Thus, I call on each and every one of you, beginning with leaders, to improve on team spirit, to put paid to patronage and to systematically recognize the efforts made by team-mates.
It is only in this way that our company will be considered as a governance model in the sector and in the sub-region.
Happy Labour Day to everyone
Thank you all for your kind attention.